During the Los Angeles Police Department’s forcible removal of the Occupy LA protest last night, they chose 12 reporters and photographers to represent the media as a whole. This is called a “media pool”…
…The LAPD deployed this old-school method in a decidedly 20th-century way. First, they didn’t select a single web-based publication or alternative news outlet. Instead they allowed the Los Angeles Daily News, Los Angeles Times, Reuters, AP, the big four television outlets, and a two radio reporters. Anybody not in that group — which would include reporters for every website not affiliated with a newspaper in Los Angeles, not to mention all citizens performing acts of journalism — were told that they would be arrested if they came too close to the eviction area…
…City police departments share a lot of information and if the LAPD’s strategy is seen as successful, expect it will be deployed again in other cities. More broadly, it seems plausible that government agencies will continue to buddy up to traditional media members, offering them exclusive access in exchange for agreeing to the exclusion of citizen journalists from important events.
7 experts in fields pertaining to both food and the environment answered one simple question: “What foods do you avoid?.” Their answers, published in an article entitled “7 Foods the Experts Won’t Eat” on Yahoo! Shine, will make you re-think food.
I like to play Monopoly: Reality Edition. What this means is that instead of distributing money evenly at the start of the game, I randomly pick a player who can play using the bank as their personal wallet. Everyone else gets $1500. If you can't win with only $1500, it's because you're lazy.
my friend responded:
Can I play? I'll bring some pepper spray and the bank-wallet player can pay me to spray it into the eyes of other players.
Most tribal peoples have developed an intimate knowledge of their surroundings, and observe minute changes in their ecosystems. As the UN’s climate change conference begins in Durban, Survival calls for the ecological knowledge and insights of tribal peoples to be heeded in global decisions concerning climate change.
Tribal peoples’ observations include:
Inuit hunters of northwest Canada report thinning sea ice, shorter winters and hotter summers, change to the permafrost and rising sea levels.
Innu people of northeast Canada report observing birds in Northern Labrador such as blue jays that are typically only found in southern Canada or the U.S., less snow during the coldest months of the year and fewer mosquitoes during the summer.
Nenet reindeer herders of Siberia report that frozen rivers are melting earlier in the season, which hinders their reindeer’s spring migration, forcing them to swim instead of walk across the ice. They also report fewer mosquitoes.
Tsaatan reindeer herders of Mongolia report that the growth of lichen and moss that nourish their reindeer is being adversely impacted.
Yanomami of the Brazilian Amazon report a change in the pattern of rainfall in the rainforest. They urge the world to recognize the vital role of the Amazon in the regulation of the world’s climate, and the contribution of deforestation to global warming.
I’ve deliberately waited a bit before examining the remark of one Jason Barker, an employee of the New York Fed, on a New York Post article that ran the day after the November 17 Occupy Wall Street protests. My initial negative reaction to his comment still holds.
The Post piece itself presented itself as a celebration of police bloodlust, but it was actually more nuanced and fairminded than you’d expect. Its headline screamed, “Ready riot cops whack back at OWS hooligans.” And the “whack” part is an understatement. Anyone who is concerned about the rise of police state tactics and the use of undue force would be put off by the conduct described in the article. This is how it starts:
It was a blur of batons, beatings and blood.
Police in riot gear answered the Occupy Wall Street mobilization with a display of force that overwhelmed protesters everywhere they gathered.
“I saw somebody kick the [barricade] — and all of a sudden the police kicked in and cracked his head,” a protester named Tim, 20, said after witnessing a Zuccotti Park confrontation that left a comrade bleeding profusely before he was hauled off to a police van.
“They were stepping on his face … They were hitting with batons. They bum-rushed him and tackled him and slammed his head down,” said the bystander. “One put his foot on the guy’s head.”
The article fails to mention that the crowd was estimated at 32,000 by the city and 40,000 by Occupy Wall Street. It’s hard to believe the police “overwhelmed” the protestors at all points given the size of the turnout. But this is the sort of “resistance is futile” message we’ve also noted in the New York Times accounts of the demonstrations.
The article continues:
In another Zuccotti showdown, cops chased a male protester into the park. They pushed him into a flower bed. He was stomped, and his head hit the concrete edge.
He left behind a pool of blood and a boot.
“I was screaming, ‘Be peaceful, be peaceful,’ ” said Seana, 38. “And then they [police] rammed. They pushed me down, and I fell backwards — and they just kept coming at us.
“It was completely intentional; they were trying to start a riot.”
The entire article continues in this vein. Despite the drive by shooting of OWS in the headline, the Post describes police violence in gory detail and has quite a few quotes from demonstrators saying how unwarranted it was. The only incident depicted where the framing could lead a reader to think the Occupiers had brought the reaction on themselves is:
Chaos erupted again at around 11 a.m., when demonstrators took down police barricades.
Streaming into the park, protesters grabbed a metal barricade and started dragging it, screaming, “Whose fences? Our fences!”
Bottom line: the story gives a pretty graphic account of acts police brutality, and for the most part, presents the Occupiers as peaceful protestors, not aggressors.
This is the first of 69 comments on the article:
Yes, this is the name of a real New York Fed employee. I’ve called the New York Fed and there is a Jason Barker working there. It seems unlikely that a third party would make use of the name and Facebook profile (the NY Post comment links to Facebook) of a junior Fed staffer. See his Linkedin profile:
As many as 2 million public workers are expected to join a one-day walkout on Wednesday, with airlines warning passengers arriving at London’s Heathrow and other airports could face 12-hour delays at immigration halls as U.K. Border Agency staff join the action.
Teachers, garbage collectors, construction workers and some medical staff are also among those who will strike in an escalating row over planned changes to public sector pensions.
The walkout is expected to top the scale of Britain’s 1979 strikes — when tens of thousands of people halted work over pay disputes. Some labor unions claim the action could even eclipse Britain’s 1926 general strike, when about 1.75 million people joined walkouts
To Occupy's uninformed and small-minded critics: Whatever you think of Occupy’s goals and methods, just don’t forget the inequities and injustices that started the movement in the first place…after decades of getting thoroughly fucked by the government & friends, some people are finally trying to do something to change things, and you have the nerve to be impatient with its clumsy methods? I’ll take trying and failing over not trying at all any day of week. Stuff it.
The raid [on Jessica Shaver’s apartment] came on the night of April 14, 2010, part of a series of drug raids across Chicago that night by the city’s Mobile Strike Force and Targeted Response Unit, essentially a SWAT team.
Shaver, her then-boyfriend and a roommate were in the apartment with her four dogs when the door flew open with the crash of a battering ram. “I thought we were being robbed,” Shaver recalled. “It wasn’t clear to us that they were cops at all. I had a flashback to my attack. I was just terrified. I peed myself. I had peed myself, and I was shaking, trying to gather my dogs while they were pointing these guns at me — these huge guns that could blow me apart. My Vizsla mix ran off, and I was afraid they were going to shoot it. I asked if I could get it, and they said ‘We don’t give a fuck about your dog.’”
According to the search warrant, the police were searching for Nate. Shaver said they looked through Nate’s belongings gathered on the couch and found about $900 and a sandwich bag filed with marijuana. They didn’t leave a receipt for what they took.
“They were going through his mail,” she said. “They tried to say he was my brother. They kept looking for some way to say he had always lived here. He had mail here, but it was mail he brought from his old place. It all had his old address on it.”
Shaver’s boyfriend and roommate were handcuffed. Shaver started to panic. She told the police about her prior assault, and asked if she could take some anti-anxiety medication and change her clothes. They refused.
“There were 20 to 25 cops in my apartment now. Some of them were in street clothes. Some of them were in SWAT clothes with face masks. They told me I wasn’t allowed to move. I wasn’t even certain they were police until about two hours later, when a uniformed cop showed up with the warrant,” she recalled.
Shaver says she heard laughter from her bathroom and bedroom. “They went to my bathroom and started going through all of my medication, laughing about how messed up I was,” she said. “I also have a ‘lady drawer,’ where I keep sex toys and some sex-related gag gifts friends have given me.” Shaver said that when the cops finally left, they had left her place a shambles. When she looked in her bedroom, the police had emptied the drawer and laid all of her sex toys out on her bed.
The raid ruined the door to Shaver’s apartment and she has since been evicted. She filed a complaint with Chicago PD, but never heard back. When she attempted to get a copy of the affidavit for the search warrant to see what probable cause they had for such a violent raid, she was told that since she was not the target of the raid, she is not allowed to see the affidavit. As for “Nate,” authorities have yet to issue a warrant for his arrest.